Bojan hands Barca narrow win

Young striker is the hero for Rijkaard's troops

Barcelona will take a narrow lead to Camp Nou after securing a 1-0 win against Schalke in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League quarter-final.

Bojan Krkic grabbed the only goal of the game for the visitors and ensures that the Catalan giants will be the favourites to progress to the last four when the two sides meet again next week.

Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard looked like a man under pressure at the start of the game, but need not have worried as his side took control from the off.

It took just 12 minutes for the visitors to take the lead, when 17-year-old striker Krkic handed them the advantage.

Thierry Henry troubled Schalke down the left and when his snap-shot was parried back to his feet from Manuel Neuer, he squared for his young team-mate to tap home.

Marcelo Bordon almost doubled the away side's advantage on the half hour mark when he came within inches of turning a Gianluca Zambrotta cross past his own goalkeeper, but was relieved to see his sliced clearance drop wide of the post.

The crowd, unhappy with what they were seeing, grew increasingly agitated as the half wore on and vented their anger with a chorus of wolf whistles at the interval.

In response, the Germans did raise their game during the second period and will be disappointed not to have taken advantage of any of their numerous chances.

Halil Altintop was guilty of spurning the best of the opportunities when he slipped through the offside trap before chipping a delicate effort wide of the far post.

Heiko Wetsermann and Soren Larsen both went close to snatching a late leveller, but Schalke were ultimately left frustrated.

The game became fragmented towards the end with a flurry of bookings and substitutions ensuring that neither side was able to establish any fluency with time running out.

The result should keep the wolves from Rijkaard's door for at least another week, but the Spaniards will need to raise their game significantly if they harbour any ambitions of making the trip to Moscow for the final in May.